Sherry Hopkins Column

Published 12:00 am Friday, December 12, 2008

Strategy for next Game Night includes fewer snacks

As parents we all want our children to do better than we did. But I’m not so sure that I want mine to be so much smarter than I am.

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My son and his family have been coming over to our house on Saturday nights for game night.

I fix something to eat and we have lots of snacks and sit at the dining table and play board games. Michael has managed to win every game we have played. I’m not happy about that.

I’ve got to find something he is not good at.

Michael is one of those men that can instinctively “fix” anything. And he does just that. Of course being a man his timeline may be a little different than his wife’s for example. But nonetheless he just knows how and what to do. He’s pretty smart.

So it will be hard to find a game that he cannot excel at. I have looked up and down the aisles of the big box store trying to find a game that would trip him up. So far no luck.

Does he have a weakness? I doubt it. Is he competitive? You bet. Do I want to beat him? Really, really, badly. Dear Don is frustrated too but he seems to take it in stride better than I do.

A couple of Saturdays ago when we played last we played the game Risk. It is a strategy game that deals with taking over countries and eventually the world by gaining and moving armies around the board. We played for 4 ½ hours until Michael and his wife as partner ruled us all.

Zac my youngest grandson and I came in second, and Dear Don teaming with Ty came in a dismal third. Sorry Dear Don but that’s the truth.

Our strategy was good but I hit a roadblock about half way through the game and could never get back my momentum.

I had made a big pot of chili earlier in the day. It was cold out and after all the turkey and dressing it sounded just right. I also made a cherry pie and Christy brought carrot cake. We popped popcorn and had bowls of peanuts, M&Ms, Hot Tamale candies, and Ike & Mike candies sitting around the table. I kept up with little Zac bite for bite. He’s nine years old and I am not.

I started to feel the rumblings of my mistake about an hour into my constant nibbling. I asked Zac to move the offending snacks away from my grasp. Then someone left the lid off the pot of chili and the smell added quickly to my misery. Dear Don looked at me one time and asked, “Are you all right?”  To which I replied weakly, “ Uh, no.”

I explained what had happened and tried to make my way through the next round of play. Just as Zac and I finished our turn I headed to the bathroom where I (and I’ll try to be delicate here) ridded myself of the contents of my stomach. After splashing cold water on my face I returned to find that Dear Don and Ty were virtually being annihilated army by army.

Next was our turn to get pulverized by Michael and Christy’s superior manpower.

I’m not sure exactly what happened while I was away but I’m sure my leaving the game led to our defeat.

When game night returns I will not only have found a game that I can win against my son the enemy but I will not have nearly as many snacks on the table to enjoy. You would think I would know better at my age. You get the picture.

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